Race Experiences

Louise Phillips Published: Monday 12 March 2018
Title: A Half-Marathon for Runners who love running!!
I absolutely love this super relaxed and friendly Half-Marathon. This is my second time of running the Thames Meander Half Marathon and it was better than ever! Great organisation and a gorgeous route right along the beautiful River Thames and a fabulous atmosphere! This really is a Marathon for people who love running! Totally unpretentious, flat, muddy as hell and a great bit of silverware to add to the collection!  What's not to love!
Eniko Mate Published: Monday 12 March 2018
Title: Thames Meander Marathon (Spring `18)
This was the second event I have taken part in, organised by Hermes Running.
As before, my experience of the race was all and all really positive.

The positives:

- very well stocked aid stations
- fantastic marshal support
- great pre/after race atmosphere
- good communication from the organisers
- adequate toilets/changing facilities  

The negatives:

- 10am start, this time seems a little too late for a marathon start, but I realise that an earlier start is not always possible
- Plastic cups. Why do you need to make use of plastic, when there are so many fantastic other options are available? Sadly i have seen a lot of people discarding their plastic next to the river, which undoubtedly will end up in the river. I would suggest banning the use of cups and encouraging people to use their own bottles, hydration packs, soft cups just like most trail races do.
- Not sure where to find my results. It's been almost 48 hours and I still can't access my results.

I will certainly sign up for more of these events, due to its size and atmosphere. 

Helen Boiling Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: 21st marathon!
I enjoyed the course up & down the river, lovely to see the boats. There were lots of very friendly fellow runners! If I could change one thing it would be the last 2 miles. Would it be possible to extend the run further up the river to avoid the last loop? Overall a great event
Laurie T Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: Thanks but one suggestion!
Thanks, day was great, I would only say it would have been improved if the cup bins had been like 50m down the track so people didn't have to choose between carrying the cup for a few km or waiting til it was finished to throw it away I appreciate it would have made emptying them a bit more effort, but it would have improved things notably for me. Thanks anyway, what were those Trailwind Chia bars you had on the stalls?

Kind regards,
Ellan Iaquaniello Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: Always a top race
Lovely race, as always, a very slick well organised event, fantastic aid stations. Super medal. Highly recommend this in any season.
Jason Donovan Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: Flat but not my favourite
we travelled from Wales on the day for this race, well organised and on time the course was nice and flat.
however, due to the weather it was pretty muddy and slippery which slowed you down. The worst part of the race had to be the last 1.9 miles. Despite knowing you had to do it, arriving back at the start line and then passing it and having to run back is not nice. Surely the extra distance could be made up going out. Aid stations not overly stocked compared to many races we have been on. Not a race I would do again
Kerry Eley Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: A great run
Fantastic, friendly race. Wonderfully organised. Great value for money. Towpath being a quagmire added to the fun. Couple of downsides: scheduled against a Head race so towpath filled with parents and boats making it difficult to get through at times and the last section is soul destroying as you run back passing the finish at 24 miles for another mile before coming back to it again.
Kathryn Lovegrove Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: Fantastic Run, well organised, great atmosphere!
Thanks to Hermes running - This was a very well organised race! Great support and lovely medal (could have done with more finish line goodies for the price of the run). Plenty of drink stops along the way with very friendly and encouraging volunteers.

The route was clearly sign posted and the course was flat making it a PB potential run. It was pretty muddy (can't be helped with a downfall the night before) and narrow for some of it and it was unfortunate that there was a regatta on at the same time causing a bit of congestion. I had a near miss of tripping over a dog but fortunately we all came out alive! All the other runners were fantastic with everyone egging and cheering each other on along the way!

I managed my goal of getting a good for age time for London Marathon 2019 so overall, thanks a million for a great race!

Kathryn :)
Paul Forsyth Published: Sunday 11 March 2018
Title: Fantastic time
This is now the 4th time I have run this race. It's becoming on of my favourite half's of the year. Friendly runners and I always love the set up by hermes running. A bit of a mud bath at some points in the race, I learned from my 2 nd race to wear trail running shoes. Overall loved it and have already booked for the "tri series" and to finish off I got a pb.
Paul Forsyth 
Valerie Ingle Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Race review
Was running to support a colleague on her first Half marathon as  our club motto is 'no one runs alone ' - aim was just to finish  so time irrelevant - objective achieved !
Ideal terrain for her first one - loved the route - although we did feel it was always us who were moving over to allow oncoming runners to pass - not all runners have the same ethos! 
The volunteers at the water stations were great - very encouraging and friendly.

Faithe Cockroft Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: For my first marathon it was an excellent experience
I must admit I was very apprehensive as I was not well before the race . This had an impact on my training . I went into the race not sure whether I would finish or not . I felt very supported by the other runners who were also finding the last 10 km hard as I did . I knew then I would just get on with it knowing I had to walk some of it . The stations were fabulous so supportive and eager to ensure I was well hydrated . This race has inspired me to do further marathons in the future 
Graham Webster Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Husband and wife ran in the Thames Meander event.
Graham Webster ran the half Marathon and Andrea ran the full Marathon on 4th November. This was the first trail event we had done as previously we had done road events. Andrea came first in her age category W55 (4.17.01) and Graham came first in his age category M60 (1.51.16). So a husband and wife double, not bad for our first Hermes event.
Our overall feedback for the organisation of the event was very positive. Great venue. Efficient registration. We were disappointed that our fellow athletes didn't give more respect to the race director at the start of the races, where there was constant chatter and little attention paid to the important pre race instructions.
Great that you could get the chip time print out straight away. We will be back in 2018.
Sue Atkinson Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Great race
A really good race as always from Hermes Running. I missed a bottle of water at the end to put into my recovery drink though. Bit annoyed that the on line results are still not up more than 24 hours after the end.
Matt Rogers Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Friendly low-key but well organised
This was the 3rd time I've taken part in the Half Marathon of the Thames Meander and I have to say it's one of the friendliest events I've had the pleasure of taking part in. 
David Ross the race director a runner himself caters for all your running  needs he's spot on with health and safety and the Aid stations have everything from water to gels and all sorts of tasty treats to keep you going.
This is my local event and I know the route well so I don't really need to pay to run there but there's nothing like a bit of race bling to reward you for your efforts and I have to say the medal I got from Hermes Running was spectacular.
Trish Kelly Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Thames meander
Was hoping for a PB on this race but unfortunately due to feeling incredibly sick at almost half way I struggled.  This had never happened in previous marathons. Luckily the route was so beautiful as I had to walk a lot,  something I never do in races or when training.

I would have liked toilets en route as I had to take in more water to try and help my sickness.
I would do this marathon again despite my saying "never again". 
The other competitors were amazing and looked out for each other, encouraging each other along the way.
gareth davies Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Thames Meander with a dolphin
Great run organised by Dave Ross out along the banks of the River Thames from Kingston towards Fulham and back - when you see Fulham FC across the river that’s half way with all the friendly marshals usually Donna and Richard !
We were treated to an unusual visitor on Saturday when a dolphin decided to swim upstream with the runners heading back past Richmond - it brought lots of people to rush and photograph this very rare sight !

Good race atmosphere and stocked aid stations with gels were a fantastic part of the day 

I’ll be back !


Mariona Sorrosal Published: Sunday 05 November 2017
Title: Not an ideal one for a PB
This is the third time I race in a hm. I felt there weren’t enough water stations and that bottles would have been better than cups. There were not mile markings and it was very disappointing at the end when you thought you were arriving at the finish line but then you had to go pass it and back again. Too many runners in a narrow route and also having to navigate through rowing boats stopping you, cars driving way too close to you, etc.. I won’t be doing this one again. 
Dave Manderscheid Published: Sunday 13 August 2017
Title: Possibly a PB (almost)
I enjoyed this flat, well-organised trot alongside the Thames yesterday. However I would really have valued mile markers for pacing and motivation. I understand that this would be complex with an out-and-back course and a marathon running at the same time. I am also not sure about the accuracy of the distance total. My GPS overestimated it which took away the PB that my device gave me. So although I enjoyed the run, my satisfaction is a mixed bag overall.
anthony maguire Published: Sunday 13 August 2017
Title: The Thames half
it was a good race although it was at least  0.5 km long.
I would suggest they stage the runners to avoid bunching at start of the race
Chris Lane Published: Sunday 13 August 2017
Title: Lane's Second Marathon at Thames Meander
Having completed the Manchester Marathon in April this year; followed by text book 'reverse taper' followed by good training I entered the Thames Marathon, as I wanted a new challenge, and looked forward to running by the Thames as I studied in London when a school boy, many years ago.
Following a DNF at the Lacock Abbey on a very hot day in June 2017 I changed the plan to the 'Half' but after good support at my Running Club in Bournemouth (Harriers) and a successful Long Half in Bath with Relish Running I reverted to the 'Full' thanks to the lovely flexibility shown by the Race Director.
Having stayed nearby on the Friday evening, my good friend gave me a lift to the YMCA Hawker Start, nervous about whether I would finish the Run. I was well hydrated and 'carb loaded, and, following a prayer (being brought up Irish Catholic), the run started.  I intended to run at 10 minute miles and then 'smash' it, as runners say, in the last 5K.  These plans were jettisoned, as the increasing heat, the demanding surface, a mixture of stones, mud, tree roots, took their toll.
However, I was able to keep going and London was a beautiful sight in the sun; the bridges, houses, pubs and rowing HQ's.  The Food Stations were brilliant, very well staffed by the Purley Cadets and the crisps helped me to keep salt levels up.
As the Run continued I noticed many runners had been forced by falls to walk the route, and I kept saying : 'Lane: watch the Floor.  since I am quite clumsy, being 6 foot three inches tall, with dyspraxia and age 62.  The 'Ave Maria' was a good mantra to recite, along with the old MUFC chant: 'Attack, attack, attack attack, attack' to drive me home
Mile 23 and Mile 26 were very hard, but i managed a good time of 4:45, so it was a good training run for the October Marathon in my home town of Bournemouth.  When the finish was completed a sign of the cross was made, then back to my friends house and then dinner in a Brazilian Restaurant in Wimbledon.  It was a great day, proud and emotional.

Paula Chillingworth Published: Sunday 13 August 2017
Title: My amazing 1st half
I started running just over a year ago with mates and became hooked and yes a week before my 53rd birthday I ran my 1st half in two hours 41 mins ... quicker then my training times ... I was so happy and chuffed that I achieved something so hard in a short time and my fellow runners Diane, Adele and Siobhan supported me all the way and helped me so much with my training and there encouragement kept me going ... for someone who drove her car everywhere and smoked I now feel running is a big part of my life ... paula chillingworth 

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